Imagine embarking on the construction of a house without consulting the future inhabitants on the number of rooms, floors, and interior design. What if the construction begins without having all the floor plans and design renderings available, relying solely on written requirements?
In such a scenario, one can only hope that the resulting house will be attractive and perfect for its intended occupants.
However, this approach defies common sense, and it is unlikely that the house will meet the needs of future inhabitants. Strangely enough, a similar approach is often taken in the digital world, where software products are developed without consulting end-users on features, functionality, and user interface design.
This is where the importance of design thinking in software projects comes in.
The Pitfalls of Traditional Approach to Software Projects
When businesses embark on digital transformation to achieve specific goals like automating, monitoring, and streamlining processes, they often follow a traditional approach:
- Assigning one or two project leaders to write the software requirements
- The people involved in writing the specifications are often different from those who will ultimately use the software solution
- Targeted end-users are not consulted about what they need to perform their jobs better and more efficiently
- Lack of consultation and collaboration often leads to software that fails to meet the needs of its intended users
- Ignoring the importance of user interface design, focusing solely on functionality
The Biggest Mistakes and Their Consequences
- One of the biggest mistakes in traditional software development includes creating specifications that do not align with the needs of the targeted users. The consequences of such mistakes include:
- Users cannot use the software tool to perform an easier and more efficient job
- The users will have a poor adoption rate of the final software tool because they will still have to use additional software helpers like Excel to complete the required tasks
- Another common mistake in traditional software development is not optimizing user interaction with the software solution for the targeted audience. The consequences of such mistakes include:
- Users go back to their old ways of doing things and stop using the provided software solution
- The process of learning the software tool is difficult because it’s not intuitive to work with, despite the available functionality being correct
- Another critical mistake in traditional software development is when the software solution does not impact valuable business goals. The consequences of such mistakes include:
- Businesses fail to gain value from their investment in the new software solution
- There is no ROI (Return on Investment) due to the failure to meet targeted business goals
- Sometimes, the failure of a software solution to bring profit or additional gains to a business can make future developments of the current project impossible or financially unfeasible
Benefits of Design Thinking Process for Every Software Project
Design thinking is a proven methodology that can significantly improve the outcomes of software projects. It is like a magic wand that turns complex digitalization projects into successful endeavors and allows you to see the project from the perspective of the end-user and create solutions that truly meet their needs.
Contact us and let’s work together to create remarkable digital solutions that drive your business forward. Make it a part of every project, and we can guide or train you on this path.